Saturday, May 31, 2008

If you're lookin' for me of late...

I've been here, in a fascinating discussion of marriage, civil union, religion, and the state. the Griper: Homosexual Marriage.

I'd welcome comment (there or here) on the subject, if anyone reading has any...

(Yeah, I let that nihilist comment Griper made at Nero's blog go... Everyone makes mistakes, and since he hasn't chosen to defend or address it in any way since, that's the story I'm goin' with... Bottom line is, I like the guy, even when I think he's wrong...)

16 comments:

Americaneocon said...

"I let that nihilist comment Griper made at Nero's blog go... Everyone makes mistakes..."

The mistake is yours, since Griper's hip to the end of history anti-intellectualism of the postmodern set.

No wonder you let it go ... a nice, regular guy like Griper could take you down logically in one minute.

repsac3 said...

Maybe he could, and maybe he couldn't...

But I let it go, Nero, because Griper didn't even try...

Should he change his mind, he & I will likely discuss it respectfully. It's likely he will offer examples of my "nihilism," and try to show how they fit with the definition of the word or philosophy.

These are things that you seem incapable of doing, preferring to repeat the same silly words, phrases, and quotes from that psychobabbler over, & over, & over, as though they will become true through repetition, & without you're having to actually show by example that you have the slightest notion of what you're talking about when you use these words & phrases.

Look, Nero... If you've actually got anything showing that I am a nihilist, or a socialist, or a denialist, or whatever the hell else you like to mindlessly call folks, bring it on... I've asked repeatedly for you to do so, and you've failed to even try (preferring to suggest that requests for proof are some kinda left wing trick, or whatever.)

Don't tell me what I am...
Show me.
Quote me, and explain how the comment is evidence of nihilism, as defined by Wikipedia or whatever. (Wikipedia seems to be your preferred source for that particular word, but you're welcome to choose another one if the wiki definition suddenly becomes insufficient for this purpose.)

It's easy to toss accusations out there...
Try backing them up... ...that, or at least find some new bullshit phrases to toss around. You're schtick's gettin' old, Mr. 'mercanDenalistNeoNadirConfabulist. That polecat skunk of yours has ceased to squeal...

Lista said...

Hi Repsac,
Here I am, yet to tell you the truth, I'm a little annoyed that you started a page that you linked to Griper's blog with a criticism of Griper. I actually happen to like the guy. If you want to let the comment go, than why are you bringing it up?

The link you left to Griper's comment is only to a comment thread and not to the post that he is responding too. For all I know, I might agree with him on it if I had the chance to read the post. As long as I do not know the context, there is no possible way for me to comment on it, for without the context, I don't understand what his comment means.

Lista said...

In a way, I can't believe that I am back on this page again. It's just that the I looked up the words "nihilist" and "nihilism" and came up with several conflicting definitions, so your post has basically left me feeling confused.

repsac3 said...

A fair point, Lista...

Here's the post:American Power: Pot Calls Kettle! Look Out for Those Opportunistic Nihilists!

To be honest, I'm confused about AmericanNeoCon's use of the word "nihilist" to describe much of the contemporary left, including yours truly, as well... I've asked him to explain it several times... But neither he--nor Griper, who made the same charge in the comment you read--has been forthcoming with the answers as to what makes me a nihilist.

If you really want to follow this thing from the beginning, you can follow the link in this comment: HaloScan.com - Comments back to the original debate (this debate: Wingnuts & Moonbats: A debate cut short) from which Griper was quoting.

Bottom line is, ANC & Griper seem to think me a nihilist. I disagree. You're free to make up your own mind...

Thanks for visiting... 8>)

Lista said...

Hi Repsac,
Is that why you invited me over here, so that I could do a whole bunch or reading and than give you my opinion on something. I'm not sure if I'm up for that right now, so I'm just going to try and define the word.

I rather doubt that they were accusing you of the most extreme definition of the word "nihilism", which is "the doctrine that all social, political and economic institutions must be completely destroyed in order to make way for new institutions". That's pretty extreme and can even involve terrorism.

I'm guessing that they were referring instead to one of the other two softer definitions that I found, which are "the denial of the existence of any basis for knowledge and truth" and "the general rejection of customary beliefs in morality, religion, etc." This sounds rather similar to relativism, which is indeed an idea that a lot of liberals believe in. Whether you do or not, I couldn't say. I don't know you well enough to say.

repsac3 said...

"Is that why you invited me over here, so that I could do a whole bunch or reading and than give you my opinion on something."

LOL... Keep in mind which of us first brought this topic up with the other 8>) (It's funny though, because at one point I did have a line in my last reply that said something like "You've been discussing marriage & whatnot with me for about a week, now... You tell me if you think I'm a nihilist." I decided that wasn't a fair position to put you in, and deleted it.) As for the additional reading, I believe you requested some of it from me... 8>)

As for the definition of the word and the left, my buddy Nero from the other blog speaks of it it thusly:

What's nihilism, in any case? I routinely deploy the term to identify hard-left terror-backing defeatists, many of whom are the main supporters of the Democratic Party.

I generally refer to my politcal opponents as "nihilist" in this sense:


An approach to philosophy that holds that human life is meaningless and that all religions, laws, moral codes, and political systems are thoroughly empty and false. The term is from the Latin nihil, meaning “nothing.”

Nihilist political philosophy's also identified with postmodern ideological movements, which privilege the notion that there exists no objective morality.


Postmodern nihilists on the left include those who've joined together in an anti-American alliance of socialism and Islam to destroy alleged American neo-imperialism worldwide. These are the same folks on the American left who call for the murder of American military service personnel as a putatively legitimate form of antiwar protest. Today's nihilists include the overwhelming majority of congressional Democrats who voted to authorize the war in Iraq in 2002, and within three months of the toppling of Saddam Hussein turned around to denounce the Bush administration for launching a "provocative and unnecessary" war.

That's opportunistic nihilism!

I also include Firedoglake as fundamentally, radically nihilist, root and branch, in its program of demonization, anti-Semitism, bereft of any shred of true traditionalism and essential value.


(If you go back to the original, which appears in the "pot calls kettle" link above, Nero has a variety of links included in these sentences... I was just too weary to repost 'em all here.)

That is essentially the definition they're using (Nero, because he wrote it, and Griper, because that is the definition he read that made him think of me & that quote of mine he posted in the first comment to which I linked...)

As for me, I still don't see it.

And as for Griper...

I understand how you feel regarding my "criticizing" him in this post. But keep in mind that I gave him every opportunity to respond, and to discuss the issue with me further, and he has not taken advantage of any of 'em, on his blog, my blog, or Nero's blog.

Besides, I think to judge me fairly, you have to keep the storyline in order here...

Griper & I have a discussion last August on my blog where I say that the person who alleges something should be the one to prove it, rather than requiring others to disprove it.

Nine months later, Griper goes to Nero's blog, reads his nihilism treatise, and offers me up as some kinda proof that the left is nihilist, based on that old argument on my blog.

I didn't ask for that, and I didn't really appreciate his dragging me into the conversation & disparaging me on a third party (not his or my) blog, especially based on such an old argument. I thought it was kinda playing dirty pool, particularly as I always found Griper to be a pretty good guy, even when we vehemently disagreed. He very seldom (if ever) calls folks names, and generally takes an issue head on if he has somethin' to say...

Should I perhaps have been a better guy, & not mentioned my disagreement with him again here?

Yeah, maybe... But I think I keep hoping that if I keep asking, he'll let me know why he acted as he did, & perhaps back up his comments regarding my "nihilism" with something more than an old quote from a nine month old debate on another blog, that I always understood to be a fundamental rule of argumentation, and not the least bit nihilist in the first place.

I'm letting it go because I seem unable to persuade Griper to discuss it, not because I want to... While I'm a bit miffed at what he said & the circumstances by which he said it, I also like the guy generally, and prefer to think he just made an error, rather than to think he's really the kinda guy who'd do such things as a matter of course...

Hopefully, that sheds some light on my side of the story, and gives you more information with which to judge the whole circumstance. I'll be glad to discuss it further if you have more comments or questions... Beyond that, all I can do is hope that you're less annoyed at my actions, given these further facts...

Lista said...

Now I have two long comments to write in relation to you and I'm just feeling so tired, but I'll be back later.

It's Ok. Don't worry about it. I'm not really "annoyed at your actions", just tired.

Lista said...

Hmmm. Another long one. I was trying to decide at first, whether or not I'm too tired for this, yet when I considered the fact that your comment may be a little bit of a summary of something even longer, I decided that I appreciate the fact that you took the time to do such a summary. Thank you.

You are the one who brought this topic up in your post, Repsac, not me.

I only requested a link to the original post, so for that I will thank you.

It looks like Nero did include the Terror related definition of the word. That's interesting, yet in this case he is referring to the "hard-left". I don't imagine that that was directed at you. It sounds to me more like a reminder of how extreme some of the backers of the Democratic party can be.

The definition relating to religions, laws, moral codes and political systems being empty and false sounds rather depressing, as does the third definition; "no objective morality", which is basically relativism.

I hate to say it, Repsac, but I have observed some of these same things that Nero has described in the Democratic party, even his mention of an "Anti-American alliance of socialism" and at times even Islam.

His suggestion that an "overwhelming majority of congressional Democrats" are nihilists is whether scary.

It is a good thing that you were too weary to repost a bunch of links because I'm too weary to click on them anyway. You have a link to the original post above, so anyone who wants to can click on that and than also click on the additional links if they feel so inspired.

I'm a slow reader, Repsac, and tire easily, so you have to sort of baby me a little and be somewhat brief whenever possible.

When I responded to you on Griper's post, I never realized that I might be walking into the middle of an unresolved dispute that has been taking place between you. I guess I don't mind it all that much. I get pulled into the middle of things like this all the time. I'm guessing that you misunderstood him and that perhaps he doesn't realize to what extent you are bothered by his remark.

You have not let it go, Repsac. I'm sure you are no doubt trying to, yet the very mention of it here in this post is evidence that you are having trouble letting it go.

repsac3 said...

"I decided that I appreciate the fact that you took the time to do such a summary. Thank you."

You're welcome. I'm always glad to clarify (But I'll usually include the links to the original & whatnot in case one wishes to check back & make sure I don't misstate the case in my summary.)

"You are the one who brought this topic up in your post, Repsac, not me."

I did make a passing reference to it, yes... But I didn't invite you over just so you would see it & reply with your thoughts on the subject. You're welcome to, of course, and I'm glad to discuss it with ya, as I will with anyone else who shows an interest...

"It looks like Nero did include the Terror related definition of the word. That's interesting, yet in this case he is referring to the "hard-left". I don't imagine that that was directed at you."

I can provide links to posts & comments by Nero that very directly (often by name) call me a "hard left nihilist" or some similar thing. If you were to regularly read Nero's blog, it would leave you with little doubt that he believes I, along with most liberal bloggers, and much of the Democratic party, in & out of office, are nihilists.

Also keep in mind, it is that definition from Nero that I quoted in my June 5th, 2:18 am comment that leads our friend Griper to reply: "you know, my vocabulary never included the word nihilism but if your meaning is correct maybe i should add it to my vocabulary for i have come to the same conclusion in regards to the ideology of the left as exemplified by a mutual adversary." That "mutual adversary" is me, Lista, as evidenced by the fact that Griper goes on to quote me in that same comment.

"I'm a slow reader, Repsac, and tire easily, so you have to sort of baby me a little and be somewhat brief whenever possible."

I can give it a shot, but I tend to be longwinded to start with, and like offering examples of what I'm saying whenever possible.

If you don't mind my asking, is there a reason for these symptoms? You've mentioned them several times... (If you do mind my asking, ignore the question or tell me to mind my own business. 8>)

"I'm guessing that you misunderstood him and that perhaps he doesn't realize to what extent you are bothered by his remark."

I'm hoping that all it is, but I would prefer that he make himself more clear if that is the case... I mean, we're only fellow bloggers, and not often on the same side of any issue, at that, but we seem to've managed to converse without delving into the slimepit, of ad Hom & rhetorical nonsense for the most part, and I like that about him.

(My relations with you have also been pleasing, up to now... Like Griper, you tend to make it about the issue, rather than the person.)

No worries on reading slow or tiring easily... Take your time, and reply back (if you have a reply, that is) whenever & in whatever length you're able... (One good thing about these blog posts & comments is that they just sit here waitin' for us to reply to 'em... If you have a new thought on the subject a month from now, the post'll still be there for you to reply to...)

Lista said...

Ok, so maybe Nero is a little bit of a name caller and a stereo typer. If I called Griper that, though, I'm quite certain it would offend him because he is very much opposed to the practice. Are you absolutely certain that he was referring to you?

I'm long winded too and it is sort of ironic because it is not really right for me to need something that even I myself have trouble delivering. If I'm long winded, than it is only fair that I'm going to have to be willing to put up with the same in other bloggers.

Since you know that Griper tends to "make it about the issue, rather than the person", than you must know that your present interpretation of his remarks is out of character for him. If I was you, I would give him the benefit of a doubt. You don't really want to lose a friendship over a silly misunderstanding, do you?

repsac3 said...

"If I called Griper that, though, I'm quite certain it would offend him because he is very much opposed to the practice. Are you absolutely certain that he was referring to you?"

Yeah, I'm pretty sure, but I'll leave these quotes & links, so you can review the evidence.

Here again, is Griper's whole comment at Nero's:

HaloScan.com - Comments:

"you know, my vocabulary never included the word nihilism but if your meaning is correct maybe i should add it to my vocabulary for i have come to the same conclusion in regards to the ideology of the left as exemplified by a mutual adversary.

he made this statement once,
' When YOU make an assertion, YOU have to prove your assertion is correct, not expect others to prove you're incorrect. If one will not or cannot to offer proof of what they claim, there is no reason for anyone to give the claim serious attention.'

and when you break his argument down it always comes to this conclusion, an unprovable set of assertions which by his own words would be 'nothing'
The Griper | Homepage | 05.25.08 - 1:18 am | #"


Here is where I said that exact thing:

Wingnuts & Moonbats: A debate cut short:

"R3: There you go, again... When YOU make an assertion, YOU have to prove your assertion is correct, not expect others to prove you're incorrect. If one will not or cannot to offer proof of what they claim, there is no reason for anyone to give the claim serious attention."

(It's near the bottom of the post, between "UPDATE: 7/31/07" & the beginning of the "comments" section.)

Note that it's a direct quote (likely cut & pasted directly from my blog to Nero's), right down to the capitalization of the word "YOU" in the first sentence.

Could it be a coincidence? Stranger things have happened, but I'm inclined to doubt it.

Lista said...

Here I am again, trying to untangle this confusion and I still really doubt that Griper really meant what you think he meant. For one thing, the quote that he used does not illustrate an example of nihilism. It illustrates just the opposite, for if nihilism means that "There is no objective morality.", than the statement that Griper quoted, "You have to prove your assertion is correct." is not a nihilistic quote because nihilism implies that the objective does not exist.

The definition that I found in my dictionary makes this even more clear because it describes nihilism not only as "the general rejection of customary beliefs in morality, religion, etc." (ethical nihilism), but also "the denial of the existence of any basis for knowledge or truth". In other words, truth can not be proved and therefore to claim that "You have to prove your assertion." is not a nihilistic statement but just the opposite.

If you want to know my opinion, Repsac, Griper's remark is hard to figure out even after reading the post that he is responding to. I have no clue what he was trying to say. He wasn't clear, so I understand it if you are feeling confused.

The comment thread that you gave a link to was sort of a frustrating one to read. You and Avericaneocon were really going at each other and not really in such a polite and respectful sort of way.

I’m not sure why Griper didn’t respond to you, Repsac.

In the debate cut short article, you seemed quite annoyed about something that was deleted. This is sort of a long article, 3 pages to be exact, followed by 5 pages of comments. I decided, at least for now, to read the article, but not the comments.

To be honest with you, Repsac, I don’t understand all of this Iraq war stuff. All I know is that the idea of removing the pressure from the terrorists by pulling out of the war scares me.

I’m not sure that I want to get into a discussion of the war, though. I don’t feel ready for that and I’m not really that eager to allow my ignorance on the issue to show.

My main motive for reading the post was to discover the context of the statement you made that Griper was quoting in his comment that you are currently troubled by.

I’m not sure why I didn’t think about this before, yet as I was reading this post, I was thinking about proof and evidence in the context of debate and realizing that it simply isn’t fair to place the burden of proof on one of the debaters and not the other. For example, if one person says I think we need to stay in Iraq and the other person says, no we need to pull out; in this debate, both parties need to back up their assertions, not just the one who initiated the discussion with the first assertion. Quite often, neither of the assertions can be fully proved and that is the reason why there is debate, whether than agreement over the issue, so I guess I don’t fully agree with what you said that Griper was quoting.

As for Griper’s remark, though, I have no idea how he thinks that insisting on proof of an assertion has anything to do with nihilism.

I wonder how long I should wait before actually going and getting Griper and telling him that I think he should take the time to talk to you about a remark he made that still appears to be bothering you, or is it actually another unfinished conversation that is bothering you? I wonder which it is.

Meanwhile, should I take the time to read the 5 pages of comments following your "Debate Cut Short" Post? We’ll see how I feel later today.

Well, I’ve written a full page. I better quit now.

repsac3 said...

In the interest of short & sweet, (I'm off to work all too soon) lemme just hit you with a clarification of the proving one's points thing, for now.

I'm not saying that only one person carries the burden in the whole conversation, but that one is responsible for the words one utters.

In other words, if I assert that "the moon is blue," I have to prove it is, if asked to do so, rather than to say "Prove it isn't." If you were to reply that the moon's green, I'd still be responsible for proving it's blue, but you'd be responsible for your assertion that it's green.

Each of us is responsible for our own assertions, and it's wrong to shift the burden of proof for what you say to the other party. (Not "Prove me wrong," but "Here's the proof that I'm correct.")

Hope that makes more sense...

Off to work... Have a great Sunday!!

Lista said...

Too bad you have to work on a Sunday. I'll be off to church soon. I don't have to play the guitar for the praise team today, just sing. It's always nice to get a little bit of a break.

Sometimes, in fact often, neither of the two assertions can be proved and the best that either party can do is say "Neither of us can prove our point, but I think my side of the issue has more evidence." But then, of course, we need to supply the evidence required in order to support that claim.

I hope you are having a good Sunday too. God Bless.

ECOPHOTOS said...

"Mommy, Reid took my doll."
"Reid, give it back."
“I want it. Make her share.”
"Mommy, he broke the arms. They not moving.”

Yesterday was Father's Day, attended by my daughter, two grandchildren, and one disabled plastic doll. When they arrived, my daughter was undertaking orthopedic surgery on the doll to restore the functionless arms and forestall a crisis.

Later that day, my family gathered at the clubhouse pool, whilst I retreated to the bar in search of beer and solitude. A very long time, I recalled, since my own kids were that age ... and decidedly out of practice, I am.

Later that day, my granddaughter discovered me at the clubhouse bar and left the stiff-armed pink plastic cherub to my care. So there I am at the bar with this functionless doll next to a half-empty beer when epiphany struck ... how much this soon-to-be-junked thing reminded me of John McCain.

"A glass of water, please," I asked the barkeep. When the water arrived, I put the doll head first and upside down in the glass.

"Power always goes to his head,” I muttered.
“Very cute,” replied the barkeep.
“Wrong on Iraq, wrong on foreign policy, wrong on the economy, wrong on judicial appointments ... and the damn thing isn't even anatomically correct for either gender," I said.
"Can I get you anything else?"
"No thanks," I said. "I believe I've had a enough." It struck me how much that stiff-armed doll and John McCain also reminded me of Dr. Strangelove.

By the way, happy Fathers' Day, y'all.